- Posted by Caitlyn Radford
- On September 4, 2018
Knee Arthroscopy and Physiotherapy
As physiotherapists at First Choice Health, we are closely involved in the rehabilitation required after a knee arthroscopy. In fact, we provide direct pre and post operative care through our involvement with a number of surgeons at Waverley Private Hospital.
Knee arthroscopy is a minimally invasive operation where a surgeon uses a camera and small instruments to investigate and repair knee joint problems. Such as meniscal tears, articular cartilage damage, ligament tears and osteoarthritis. In most cases there are only 2 small incisions required and the operation is usually done as a day case.
Most surgeons these days have, as part of their operative protocol, a physiotherapist pre operative consultation. This is usually done in the days before or on the day of surgery and prior to being admitted for the procedure. The main focus of this consultation is to prepare and inform the patient of the expectations and requirements immediately following their surgery so that they gain the best possible outcome. The following points are reviewed in the pre op as well as the patient being given an information sheet:
- Education about expectations and precautions
- Management of dressings
- Instruction of ice protocol
- Crutch fitting and gait education and practise
- Post operative exercises for range of movement and strength
- Follow up out patient management
At First Choice Health, we like to ensure that every patient is reviewed by one of our physiotherapists in the week following their surgery. This is to ensure they are managing as expected and to further progress their gait and rehabilitation exercises.
In most cases, we are able to see the patient off their crutches after about 3 days and be ready to start some more advanced exercises. The main aim for the physiotherapist is to rehabilitate the patient to their full potential. Functional strength and return to full home activities, work requirements or sporting goals are the focus of a full recovery.
Sometimes there are pre-existing biomechanical issues that have contributed to the reasons for requiring the surgery that also need to be considered as part of the rehabilitation process. The physiotherapist will often liaise with the surgeon about expected outcomes and timelines for targeted return to specific activities.